Taser was the brain child of Jack Cover a NASA researcher who originally began developing the weapon concept back in 1969. In it’s early stages Taser was introduced as a firearm as it utilized a pyrotechnic discharge to fire it’s electric darts. In the late 1990’s the Taser M26 was introduced and was the second model next to the Air Taser that did not use a pyrotechnic charge but instead used compressed air to fire it’s projectile dart cartridge. It was first deployed by law enforcement agencies around 1997 and was in use for approximately eight years prior to the introduction of the Taser X26. The Taser M26 has proven to be one of the most reliable and robust Tasers ever constructed, but it’s size and technology may render it a dated weapon by some opinions.
The Taser M26C (consumer model) is the size of a standard firearm and offers one shot to the user. The cartridges sold by Taser to consumers offer a fifteen foot shot range instead of the twenty one foot range cartridges available to law enforcement agencies. After the cartridge has been deployed the user can still use the weapon as a touch stun device without reloading a new cartridge into the weapon. The Taser Advanced M26c discharges 50,000 volts at 26 watts of stopping power to stop assailants in their tracks and renders the platform as an effective alternative to traditional firearms. The system also features an integrated laser sight which is activated when the ambidextrous safety is switched to firing mode. The taser M26C uses eight AA batteries to power the weapon which are housed inside the pistol grip and a single trigger pull will result in a five second firing cycle, subsequent trigger pulls will result in additional stuns to the target.
Taser also offers it’s “Safe Escape Product Replacement Guarantee” which states that a Taser unit will be replaced if a Taser is used in self defense and has to be left behind in order for the user to escape for a hazardous situation. Each Taser cartridge also contains AFID which are small confetti type markers identifying which Taser cartridge was used in a self defense scenario. The caveat to the plan is that a police report has to be filed. The Taser M26C also has a data port that records and enables the user to download data on each firing of the weapon. All in all the weapon is a decent alternative to traditional firearms and has the ability to stop a single threat. Taser International does not seem to offer this system through their website any more, but numerous other online vendors still carry this.